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South American Natives

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South American Natives

Most of the Salvia species and varieties in the general nursery trade are from Mexico or the United States. Some of the Mexican species also are native to South America. However, the southern Western Hemisphere, similar to Mexico, is a land of varying climates. This makes South American species more adaptable to many parts of America.

Some South American species are well known in American gardens, including varieties of the ever-popular Salvia splendens. We offer some of the more dramatic and less common types. South America is also a source of exotic and high-altitude species. 

Plants


  • Salvia guaranitica 'Sapphire Blue'

    (Sapphire Blue Anise-Scented Sage) The large, sapphire blue flowers of this Anise-Scented Sage glow in the full-sun or partial-shade garden from summer into fall. Similar to Salvia guaranitica 'Blue Ensign', this is a shorter variety of the water-loving species.

    10.50
     


  • Salvia guaranitica 'Van Remsen'

    (Van Remsen's Anise-Scented Sage) Big and beautiful, this Anise-Scented Sage grows up to 7 feet tall in rich soil and has lavender-to-purple flowers. In our garden, it blossoms from late spring to fall, attracting both honeybees and hummingbirds.
    10.50
     


  • Salvia haenkei

    (Prawn Sage) Although the common name for this flaming red, Andean sage is based on its flower's resemblance to a shrimp head, its scientific name goes back to the days of late 18th century Spanish exploration of the Americas.

    12.50
     


    New!
  • Salvia heerii

    (Peruvian Bush Sage) In 1853, Polish botanist and South American plant explorer Józef Warszewicz (1812-1866) found this superb sage with its giant clusters of reddish-orange flowers in the high elevation Cajamarca region of Peru. He sent a sample to German botanist Eduard August von Regel (1815-1892), who named it for for Swiss naturalist Oswald von Heer (1809-1883).

    15.00
     


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  • Salvia leucocephala

    (White Headed Sage) One of the most visually stunning members of the genus, this large growing, tender, winter blooming species from the mountains of Ecuador will turn every head with its furry white calyxes and brilliant magenta red flowers.

    15.00
     


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  • Salvia libanensis

    (Giant Colombian Red Mountain Sage) In 1898, physician and medical plant researcher Henry Hurd Rusby (1855-1940) found this towering sage with large, deep red flowers in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta mountains of Colombia.

    15.00
     


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  • Salvia libanensis 'Pink Form'

    (Giant Colombian Pink Mountain Sage) In 1898, physician and medical plant researcher Henry Hurd Rusby (1855-1940) found the red-flowered variety of this towering species in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta mountains of Colombia. This one has large, reddish-pink flowers.

    15.00
     


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  • Salvia macrophylla 'Purple Leaf'

    (Purple Leaf Tall Big Leaf Sage) Bright green on top, the long leaves of this distinctive sage are a dark, furry purple on the undersides. Like the more typical green form of Salvia Macrophylla, this variety has cobalt blue flowers that seem to float in airy clusters on 12-inch-tall branching spikes.

    10.50
     


  • Salvia macrophylla 'Short Form'

    (Creeping Big Leaf Sage) Cobalt blue flowers float in airy clusters above the giant, velvety, green leaves of this South American native. Short and spreading by woody rhizomes, this is an ideal groundcover. As a bold statement in a container, it has no equal.

    10.50
     


  • Salvia macrophylla 'Tall Form'

    (Tall Big Leaf Sage) Cobalt blue flowers seem to float in airy clusters on 12-inch-tall branching spikes above the bright green, velvety foliage of this South American native. Up to 5-feet tall, tidy and upright in habit, this sage makes a fine background or border planting when massed.

    10.50
     


  • Salvia orthostachys

    (Straight Spike Sage) Covered with whorls of crimson flowers, this long-blooming, perennial sage has erect form. It matures into a tall, wide plant that is ideal for massing as a screen or at back of border.

    10.50
     


    New!
  • Salvia oxyphora

    (Fuzzy Bolivian Sage) Large, bright and fuzzy, the cherry-licorice red flowers of this sage top what at first glance appears to be smooth, glassy green foliage. Up close, the large, lance-shaped leaves are velvety with clear-to-white hairs.

    10.50
     


  • Salvia pallida

    (Pale Sage) Powder blue flowers are cupped by lavender calyxes on this lovely yet little-used sage native to moist meadows in Argentina. It is a tall, narrow plant with delightful oval-shaped leaves with scalloped margins.

    10.50
     


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  • Salvia praeclara

    (Bolivian Sage) From early Spring to first frost, brilliant scarlet flowers on spikes up to 18 inches long adorn this Bolivian native in USDA Zones 9 to 11. Even if you live in a zone with colder winters, Bolivian Sage is spectacular as a bedding plant. has been called Salvia coccinea on steroids due to its .  needs rich, well-drained soil and full sun - but will grow in a wide range of soil, water and light conditions.

    8.00
     


  • Salvia pseudococcinea

    (False Tropical Sage) Sometimes plant naming is complicated. Such is the case with Salvia pseudococcinea, which is known by a number of scientific and common names. Sometimes it is called Salvia coccinea var. pseudococcinea.

    10.50
     


    New!
  • Salvia raymondii ssp. mairanae

    (Bolivian Mountain Sage) Neon lilac-pink flowers light up the handsome, furry foliage of this distinctive sage from high in the Andes cloud forests. Its large, textured leaves have dark, velvety purple undersides. Unhappy in dry heat, this is a very showy plant for humid climates.

    10.50
     


  • Salvia retinervia

    (Bolivian Lace Leaf Sage)  A large decidious woody shrub, this is a distinctive and somewhat unique Salvia species.  The large clusters of deep blue flowers appear in the spring and again in the fall. A native from a tropical savanna climate in Bolivia, this species grows best in climates with year-round warmth.

    14.50
     


    New!
  • Salvia rhinosina

    (Confused Argentine Sage) Similar in many ways to the indispensable garden favorites of the Anise Scented Sage (Salvia guaranitica spp.) group, this plant is a perfect companion for its better known cousin.

    10.50
     


    New!
  • Salvia rubescens

    (Venezuelan Red Sage) Purple stems and calyxes so dark that they almost look black contrast dramatically with the deep red-orange flowers of this South American beauty. This tall, spectacular sage has been in cultivation for decades but is still rare in gardens. We'd like to see that change.

    10.50
     


  • Salvia rubescens subsp. dolichothrix

    (Tall Red Colombian Sage) Salvia rubescens subsp. dolichothrix may tower over your head when in full bloom with its creamy red trumpet blossoms and dark calyxes. Its leaves are large and attractively textured.

    10.50
     


  • Salvia rypara

    (River Sage) Native to partially shaded streamsides in Argentina and Bolivia, this is one of the few Salvia species that can tolerate wet soil.  It makes a fine filler plant in a group of other partial shade growers, its wirey thin stems sending up floral displays here and there, much to the gardener's delight.

    10.50
     


    New!
  • Salvia rypara x durifolia 'Elk'

    (Hybrid River Sage) This beautiful new plant is a FBTS hybrid between to rare South American species.  In growth and flower it is intermediate between the parents, and fast growing because of it's hybrid vigor.

    11.50
     


    New!
  • Salvia sagittata

    (Arrowleaf Sage) Brilliant royal blue flowers and unusual foliage attract the eye to Arrowleaf Sage. This large herbaceous perennial is found at elevations up to 10,500 feet in the Cordillera de los Andes of Chile, Ecuador and Peru.

    10.50
     


  • Salvia sp. SL411

    (Mystery Peruvian Sage) Airy spikes of fuzzy, bright orange-red flowers and grassy green calyxes mark this Peruvian sage as a mystery worth pursuing. Little is certain about its parentage, according to Argentinian Salvia specialist Rolando Uria of the University of Buenos Aires and Salvias.com.ar.

    10.50
     


  • Salvia sphacelioides

    (Furry Colombian Sage) The leaves of this rare shrub are a glossy mid-green on top and fuzzy with hairs underneath, which is why it's commonly called Furry Colombian Sage.

    10.50
     


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  • Salvia splendens 'Elk Mauve'

    (Elk Mauve Scarlet Sage) Rich deep mauve flowers and large mid-green leaves make Salvia splendens 'Elk Mauve' an unusual Scarlet Sage.  Vigorous and free flowering, this FBTS introduction is a new introduction for 2017.

    10.50
     


    New!
  • Salvia splendens 'Variegated Mauve'

    (Variegated Mauve Scarlet Sage) Pale mauve flowers and mid-green leaves that are lightly polka dotted with yellow variegations make Salvia splendens 'Variegated Mauve' an unusual Scarlet Sage.

    10.50
     


  • Salvia splendens van houttei 'Big Pink'

    (Big Pink Scarlet Sage) Hummingbirds are drawn to the deep wells of nectar in sages such as Salvia splendens van houttei 'Big Pink'. Its narrow, tubular flowers are a pure, clear pink and are supported by cream to dusky pink calyxes.

    10.50
     


    Special Order Plant
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  • Salvia splendens van houttei 'Burgundy'

    (Burgundy Scarlet Sage) Blood red to burgundy, the drooping blossoms of this sturdy, long flowering Salvia are the first that anyone comments on in a mixed planting. Use it singly as a dramatic garden accent or container plant; mass it for a stunning effect.

    10.50
     


  • Salvia splendens van houttei 'Dancing Flame'

    (Variegated Scarlet Sage) Crimson flowers topping bright yellow foliage mottled with deep green make this one of the most spectacular Salvias we grow. There are numerous clones of this variety throughout the U.S. nursery trade, but we consider ours to be the best, as it originated in our nursery.

    10.50
     


  • Salvia splendens van houttei 'Elk White'

    (Elk White Scarlet Sage) The first tall white Salvia splendens variety, this new introduction from Flowers by the Sea is vigorous and free flowering all season long.

    10.50
     


    New!
  • Salvia splendens van houttei 'Light Plum'

    (Light Plum Scarlet Sage) Long, narrow and tubular, the pinkish-plum flowers of Salvia splendens van houttei 'Light Plum' are pleasing wells of nectar for hummingbirds. Similarly colored calyxes support the blossoms and increase their appeal to people as well as pollinators.

    10.50
     


  • Salvia splendens van houttei 'Louie's Orange Delight'

    (Louie's Orange Delight Scarlet Sage) A vivid red-orange, the drooping blossoms of this sturdy, long flowering Salvia are large and numerous. Use it singly as a dramatic garden accent or container plant; mass it for a stunning effect. This is an heirloom plant from the Atlantic Coast, where it has been grown as a hummingbird plant for decades.

    10.50
     


  • Salvia splendens van houttei 'Paul'

    (Paul's Scarlet Sage) Long, narrow and tubular, the reddish purple flowers of Salvia splendens van houttei 'Paul' are alluring wells of nectar for hummingbirds. Similarly colored calyxes support the blossoms and add to this sage's siren call.

    10.50
     


  • Salvia splendens van houttei 'Peach'

    (Peach Scarlet Sage) A subtle but beautiful peachy orange, the drooping blossoms of this sturdy, long flowering Salvia are the first that anyone comments on in a mixed planting. Use it singly as a dramatic garden accent or container plant; mass it for a stunning effect.

    10.50
     


  • Salvia splendens van houttei Faye Chapel'

    (Faye Chapel Scarlet Sage) A vivid red, the drooping blossoms of this sturdy, long flowering Salvia are large and numerous. Use it singly as a dramatic garden accent or container plant; mass it for a stunning effect. This is an heirloom plant from the Atlantic Coast, where it has been grown as a hummingbird plant for decades.

    10.50
     


    New!


Take a Quick Look at a group of Salvias
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Reviews


Having recently received Cayman, I haven't yet seen it in bloom but am delighted to give a home to a plant that was on the brink of extinction. Since it may be short-lived, I'll keep it in a pot and try leaf cuttings in the winter. I like this com...
Ms. Robin Hoselton
Jun 3, 2017